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Monday, March 03 2014
Don't Let Your Images Hurt Your Image

use quality imagesWhen it comes to online success, image is everything - that is, your images are everything. Want to sell more products? The quality of your images is the key. Want to improve your social media engagement? Include images in your posts. Want to build a huge following on Pinterest? You can’t do it without images. There’s a reason Instagram is one of the most popular apps on the market. People love pictures.

Now imagine that you’re trying to buy something online and the website has nothing but a description of the item. Sure, you can imagine a “blue sweater” or a “red scarf” in your mind, but there are a million different variations of those items and no matter how descriptive and detailed you make your copy, there’s little chance that the customer will be able to accurately picture your exact item. That’s why images, good images, are so vital to your online store’s success.

Populating your store with images is easy when you use our online store builder. This doesn’t mean that you can just throw any image into the space and hope that it works, though. Given that 67 percent of online shoppers say an image’s quality is important when making an online purchase, and that more than half of shoppers rank images ahead of descriptions, reviews and product information in terms of importance, you can’t cut corners on your product photos.

Picture Perfect Pictures

Photographs are not just a means of displaying your wares. Your photos are a marketing tool. You want them to look as attractive and professional as possible while giving customers the information they need to make a decision. That means:

  • Pay attention to lighting and composition. A poorly lit, poorly composed photo is not going to do you any favors. Use natural light whenever possible instead of flash, which distorts colors, flattens the image, and adds glare. Photograph your items against a neutral background to avoid distractions.
  • Shoot from multiple angles. Take multiple photos of each item to show all of its features.
  • Show the item in use. Your product information might provide measurements or instructions for use, but offer an image as well. Your customer will get a better idea of how the blue sweater fits, or how large the item actually is in relation to other items.
  • Show multiple colors, when necessary. Do you offer an item in multiple hues? Take a photo of each, so customers know what to expect.
  • Allow for zooming. When you post your images, allow customers to zoom in on them to get a better look at the details.
  • Be consistent. Take all of your product photos using the same background and settings, and use those same settings whenever you add new products to your portfolio. It looks more professional than a haphazard array of images.

While taking your own product photos is cost-effective, if you can’t get them right, it may be worth investing in a professional photographer to do it for you. Don't use your phone camera for your product pictures. Invest in a quality digital camera and a tripod. There are many inexpensive photography kits available online that include a tripod, lighting, diffusers, and background templates to make it easy for you to take your own product images.

However, taking the pictures is just the first step. You then need to edit and optimize those images for web use before they will be ready to post or upload online. You want your images to load fast, so crop out any unnecessary areas. Resize the images to a sensible and consistent dimension so that all the images on your site appear uniformly sized. Little details like that go a long way to making your products and you look professional.

You will quickly recoup any investment in tools, software, or professional services when your high quality images entice customers to hit the “buy” button.

Posted by: Carol Stevens AT 08:50 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email

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